Tester wins third Senate in Montana - The Hill

Sen. Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterMidterms: The winners and losers Senate GOP beats expectations with a larger GOP majority to retain Senate majority MORE (D-Mont.) Is the projected winner in Montana and survived a race that was tightened during the last few weeks during heavy campaigns by President TrumpDonald John TrumpMidterms: The winners and losers GOP Rep Mike Bost wins re-election in Illinois Sisolak becomes the first Dem to win the Nevada governors race since 1994 MORE and his eldest son, Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpManchin holds Senate seat in West Virginia My father wants to end illegal immigration with this answer NBC backtracks, will no longer breathe controversial Trump MORE

Tester, a third-generation farmer from the north of Montana, turned his record and invited no prominent Democratic politicians to campaign for him in an effort to keep his focus on him and his opponent, Matt Rosendale, a Maryland transplant that moved to the state in 2002.

He criticized the accountant of Rosendale, Montana, as an "Eastern" & # 39; which was financed by groups from outside the state that understood the issues that the Montanans do not like, such as the maintenance of public land.

"This is a race between myself and Matt Rosendale, make no mistake Matt Rosendale does not know what the hell is going on in Montana, so he does not talk about the problems he believes because he does not know them," Tester said. last week at The Hill in an interview.

The Tester ran his report of helping veterans as the highest Democrat in the Senate Veterans' Committee, and he regularly praised the bills he was helping to pass, such as the VA Mission Act, which Trump signed into law in June.

He also attempted to distance himself from prominent Democrats in Washington and criticized colleagues for their handling of the Supreme Court. Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughMidterms: The winners and losers Election election: where should we look now at Alabama, W.Va. voters approve anti-abortion amendments MOREThe affirmative fight.

Last week he interviewed Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenElection fallout: where to watch Warren wins re-election, set-up 2020 White House bid Sherrod Brown wins re-election in Ohio MORE& # 39; S (D-Mass.) Use of DNA test results to claim native American heritage.

Native Americans make up between 7 percent and 9 percent of the state's population, and Tester predicted that they would make the difference in the race during their campaign at the Fort Belknap Indian Reserve in North Montana last week.

Tribal leaders said they expected 80% turnout in their communities, which were expected to be overwhelmingly in favor of Tester.

The president visited Montana twice in the last weeks of the campaign in an attempt to nationalize the race and warned that Tester would be a reliable voice for the Democratic Leader of the Senate. Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerThe figures do not lie: American job-seekers are better off under GOP Trump calls Gillum & # 39; not equipped & # 39; as the governor of Florida McSally accuses Arizona of media & # 39; protection & # 39; Dem opponent Sinema MORE (N.Y.).

Hundreds of people stood for hours in cold weather in Belgrade, Mont. To see Trump talk during a mass demonstration on Saturday before the election day.

Trump told his supporters that Tester would be in "lockstep" with the Democratic leader of the House Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D & # 39; Alesandro PelosiMidterms: The winners and losers Ryan at mid-way: & # 39; Tonight history has repeated itself & # 39; Election elections: what should you look at now MORE (California), California Rep. Maxine WatersMaxine Moore Waters Maxine Waters re-elected in California Trump says he wants to unite the country with & # 39; eventually & # 39; Dems seek check on Wall Street, Trump in between MORE (D) and "Crying Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerThe figures do not lie: American job-seekers are better off under GOP Trump calls Gillum & # 39; not equipped & # 39; as the governor of Florida McSally accuses Arizona of media & # 39; protection & # 39; Dem opponent Sinema MORE. "

"Remember that Tester voted against your tax cuts," he said.

Trump Jr. also toured the weekend before Halloween by the state and attracted enthusiastic crowds in Butte, Helena and Kalispell.

For the Trumps, the race in Montana became personal after Tester played a leading role in removing the nomination of naval admiral Ronny Jackson to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Trump Jr. Called Tester a "piece of garbage" during a rally in Helena because of the way he treated Jackson.

Tester raised considerably more money than Rosendale and collected more than $ 19 million in its senate fund compared to documents filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC). Rosendale gained just over $ 5 million, according to the FEC.

Outdoor groups spent almost $ 22 million to help Tester and just under $ 21 million to help Rosendale.

The race narrowed after the division of the Senate over Kavanaugh, who opposed Tester.

Although he campaigned last week, he criticized his colleagues because he had misinterpreted accusations that the judge had sexually attacked Christine Blasey Ford when they were both in high school, an allegation that Kavanaugh denied.

"It had failed from the beginning, it was absolutely unsuccessful, I do not think it's helpful, Mrs. Ford, I do not think it helped Kavanaugh," Tester told The Hill.

Tester made himself available to the press and voters in the last week of the campaign, while Rosendale did not usually take into account press interviews.

As a result, the Tester was found to carry out a folksy grass-roots operation, while Rosendale appeared and was coordinated with high-profile GOP surrogates visiting from Washington.

Tester had an average lead of 3 points on the election day, but the question was whether Trump, who bore Montana in 2016 with 20 points, would be able to give his basic enough energy to throw out the 12-year-old seated player.

Instead, Tester could create sufficient distance between himself and party leaders to win.